FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO) – Former TinCaps shortstop Trea Turner is going to play in the World Series for the Washington Nationals.
Turner will play against his old Fort Wayne manager Michael Collins, who is now the catching coach for the Houston Astros’. Michael Collins served as coach and manager in the Padres’ organization for seven years from 2011-2017, which includes Fort Wayne in 2014.
The San Diego Padres selected Turner with the 13th overall pick in the 2014 NLB Draft out of Carolina State. Turner made his debut with San Diego’s short-season affiliate, the Eugene Emeralds. Turner was transferred to Fort Wayne on July 12, after playing 23 games in the Northwest League.
The TinCaps had lost a franchise-record of 13 consecutive games when Turner joined them. After Turner started with the TinCaps, they went 28-21 and made the Midwest League playoffs, including upsetting the West Michigan Whitecaps in the opening round to advance to the Eastern Division Championship Series.
Starting with Turner’s debut with the TinCaps and all through the regular season, Turner led all players in Minor League Baseball in hits with 69 in 46 games. He led the Midwest League in on-base percentage with.447 and batting average of .369, while taking third-ranking in OPS at .976. Also, Turner tops the TinCaps with a .529 slugging percentage, 14 stolen bases, 14 doubles, 24 walks, 31 runs, 99 total bases, and he is tied for the high in triples with. He also exceeded defensively as shortstop.
Although Turner didn’t log enough plate appearances to qualify for official franchise records, his .369 batting average is the highest ever in Fort Wayne’s 27-year history for any player with at least 155 plate appearances in a season. His .976 OPS is second to only James Darnell’s .986 OPS in the first half of 2009. Darnell went on to play 25 games for the Padres in 2011-2012.
Turner was traded by the Padres to the Nationals in 2015, which was a year after he was drafted by the Padres. He made his debut in the big-leagues in August and soon became one of baseball’s top players.
He won two National League Player of the Month awards in 2016 and also made Baseball America’s All-Rookie Team as he finished fifth in the NL in both, stolen bases and triples.
Turner led the National League in stolen bases last year with 43, all while he was one of only seven players in the majors to appear in 162 games. This season, Turner finished second in the National League with 35 stolen bases even though he spent a month and a half on the injured list.
Turner is technically the first former TinCaps player to make it to the World Series. He is now Washington’s starting shortstop and leadoff batter.